12/20/2010

‘Big App’ is watching you, with iPhone worse offender than Android

Filed under: — Aviran

Your smartphone may be secretly transmitting to “outsiders,” such as ad networks, your name, your location, your age, your gender, your phone number, your unique device number and other personal data without your knowledge or consent.

As part of a series of articles on privacy, Scott Thurm and Yukari Iwatani Kane reported in the Wall Street Journal that smartphones “don’t keep secrets. They are sharing this personal data widely and regularly.”

The reporters, reviving the spyware controversy in the new era of apps, examined 101 apps and found that 56 of them transmitted the smartphone’s unique device ID and 47 apps transmitted the phone’s location.

Daniel Eran Dilger said in Apple Insider: “The findings might be news to some smartphone users, who are rarely presented with simple, straightforward information about individual apps’ privacy policy.”

The limited survey—where Apple offers hundreds of thousands of apps for the iPhone—found: “iPhone apps transmitted more data than the apps on phones using Google Inc.’s Android operating system.”

Google PowerMeter tracks home electricity via Wi-Fi

Filed under: — Aviran

Google’s PowerMeter Web application can now track home electricity from a PC or smartphone using Wi-Fi and a home’s broadband connection.
Blue Line Innovations is expected to announce a deal tomorrow to tie its PowerCost Monitor to Google’s PowerMeter for monitoring home energy. Combined with a WiFi Gateway sold by Blue Line Innovations, a person can get real-time and historical information on electricity use. PowerMeter also lets people create a home energy budget, share efficiency tips, and predict costs.

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